25 is a big number.
While 20, a coccoon appears to reveal a beautiful butterfly.
21 would have been the first real taste of responsibility.
22 would see one starting to get used to this freedom.
23 is a year of difficult doubts and decisions.
24 is a year of ups and downs and of trial and error.
Finally 25 shows a different, stronger, and more confident individual.
Travelling, meeting people, learning new things about our culture, I am at a point where I have never been as patriotic, and choked with love of the country as I have ever been in any other point of my life.
But on this day, I don’t rejoice. I feel strangely terrified.
This nation had seen difficult times, and that difficult time has not passed. Perhaps, it was only a taste of what is to come. A warning for the generation that have not seen what freedom was like before 1984.
I was in Kiulap one day, and one poster never left my mind. The sunset featured on the National Day poster is like a symbol. We are entering night. It will get darker and darker. Perhaps there will be a full moon lighting, and leading our way. But it will be a very long time before we reach dawn.
What will my generation be faced with? I am terrified. We must pray for that light from the moon. Because when I think of the light of that moon, I am hopeful. Just like when I see and picture shelter under that golden umbrella, I am hopeful.
In the midst of music and dance, celebrations and jubilations, what really are we celebrating? A number. Focus our attention to the sunset, and the impending darkness, and please celebrate what our freedom has enabled us to receive.
Free high quality education, nearly free high quality healthcare, a high standard of living, and freedom to achieve dreams that our forefathers have never even dreamed of.
If darkness is to come, pray for a bright, shiny, beacon of hope, that is the moon. When we are hopeful, we are not afraid.
Untuk Brunei ku tercinta, selamat menyambut hari kebangsaan yang ke dua puluh lima.